|A few announcements.
||[May. 7th, 2008|08:05 am]
LJ United -- Standing Up For LiveJournal's Future!
I'm proud to announce that rm is our "english" candidate for the LiveJournal advisory board position! Congrats Racheline! I know you'll be an excellent candidate to speak out for the issues that effect us. |
I also want to introduce and thank another person for joining us here in LJ United. Yesterday, I noticed that squeaky19 decided to run for the LJ Advisory Board as well. Squeaky19 is probably best known as being Squeaky, the admin / creator of InsaneJournal, a home to a ton of people who also feel that LiveJournal took the wrong path somewhere along the way.
So, I contacted him yesterday, saying :
"I noticed that you are running for the advisory board in order to have a voice for all of the sites that use the LiveJournal GPL source code. This is an issue near and dear to my heart, as I feel that the management has done LJ source sites a significant disservice over the years, and I think that LJ code sites do need representation.
For instance, a lot of the ideas that I had in the early days of LJ were about making LJ code sites more of an open network of sites rather than a centralized, largely locked in site with poor interactivity between LJ code sites, rather than having the ability to "friend" people on other LJ code sites. A lot of these issues were ignored by LJ for what I viewed as largely shortterm, self-serving reasons inappropriate for an open source project, and sometimes code and the offer to code certain projects were rejected for the same.
ljunited is very supportive of the revitalization of LJ as an open source project, and I would like to invite you to join our community and to post to it, offering up your thoughts on what we can do to put forward policies regarding how LiveJournal/SUP can better support the open source project and sites such as IJ.
I think it's great that you're running and I think that sites like IJ truely do need a voice, but I also feel like what we are likely to see in this race is that a lot of the issues-oriented candidates will split the vote, while the various LJ "stars" with large friends lists win based on zero substance.
For this reason, I ask that you consider the advantages of helping us create a united front against this, to be our advisor on all things open source and related to other LJ Code sites, and to help us draft the kind of policies regarding LJ and open source that will allow for strong representation for all LJ code sites and the open source community."
And so, Squeaky is in da house... both unified with us on taking the kind of firm stands on the issues that we do, and also here to be our "go to" guy on all issues open source and relating to LJ Code sites, which, rightfully, should be viewed as our brothers, and not as some sort of competitor.
People talk to me sometime when I point out things like how LJ is shrinking in site activity, and ask me:
"Do you think LJ will survive? For how long? Should I move my journal elsewhere!? All of my friends are on LJ, except for some who have already gone to (InsaneJournal, Blurty, etc.)"
I don't always have an answer for them, because a lot of that depends upon what the owners of LJ do. And I have a problem with personally telling anyone to move their journal, because that is such a painful, heartrending thing to do at times, because you pour your whole life into it, build up your friends around it, and even if you can painfully migrate your journal over to another site and read your friend's journal entries through syndicated feeds, you still lose access to those friends-locked entries and that closeness and bond that comes from being on the same site.
What I do know is that all of that pain simply isn't necessary. It's pain that could -- and should -- be solved by code. Open soruce projects shouldn't "lock in" their users... but LJ *DOES* do so, because, well... it's good for business.
I think this is a very irresponsible shortterm point-of-view, however. There is real value from a business perspective to having LJ be viewed as not just livejournal.com, but as a serious piece of community-creating software that ties people in to a large decentralized network of LJ code sites.
I'm also very concerned that if, one day, we all wake up to find that the owners of LJ decided to pull the plug on the site due to lack of profitability, the other LJ code sites just couldn't handle millions of people fleeing to their sites, and could find their community threatened because of the failures of LJ to get their act together. Even though I want to see sites like InsaneJournal grow and thrive, I don't want to see that day ever happen.
So, yes, if we are to talk about unity and about what is best for the future of LiveJournal, the open source project, and LiveJournal the larger community experience, we *NEED* people like Squeaky to have a voice, and we need to lend our voice to his, in support. Because we're all in this together.
So, a big welcome to Squeaky! We support you, and ask you to please, help us do this thing right. I also encourage you to make us a resource on LJ and a "home away from home" for those times when you really need people on LJ to speak up for you to the powers that be, and who support your side of the issues that effect you.